Friday, September 24, 2010

Hitting the Mark

Prayer Requests:

This week begin the mid-week Bible study for children ages 8 – 11. Jon was motivated to start the study during the week because he no longer has been teaching this group on Sunday mornings. The time was spent playing a Bible related bean bag toss focused on sin and “missing the mark”. Jon is going through Christian basics; pray for the salvation and discipleship of these children.

2. Despite Jon nearly losing his voice during the stay of our modern day,
West Virginian Joshua and Caleb, we had a wonderful time with Pastor Shawn and Doctor Rodney. The men got a “feel” for life at the Ranch, saw huge potential for ministry and desire to bring a short term missions team down next spring! Praise God. Pray for details to solidify as Jon is working to collaborate with a local private Catholic hospital. The head priest gave us a big thumb’s up, completely opening the hospital for use for a medical brigade and also gave us permission to evangelize! Wow! Far beyond our expectations.

3. Jon’s parents, David and Marsha, finished their time in Honduras with several laughs and a few tears. They were a wonderful help with several small projects around the Ranch as well as putting in a lot of granddaughter time!

4. We are still planning on hosting the engineer team the first week of October. We are in need of financial help to sponsor the team. Pray that God will bless the ministry time as we collaborate with this group of US volunteer engineers. They are planning to help us look at use of the land for buildings, farming, animals, wells, as well as help with the design of a few buildings! (We still are in need of $1,200 for the project).

5. Rancho Oasis road crew is still working hard each week! Keep praying for safety as we travel back and forth from the Ranch to Ojojona (or Tegus) and back.

Sunday morning’s adult and youth study are going very well. This last week we studied the parable of the sower in Luke 8:4-15. It was wonderful to see light bulbs start to go in people’s minds as they studied the word. Group dynamics are interesting as Jon works with some illiterate adults and teens amidst a wide range of educational backgrounds and ages. God’s Word does not return void! (Isaiah 55:11). Attendance is also growing and we are in need of at least 20 more metal chairs. (This weekend is also the last weekend of support from the church in Tegucigalpa, read the blurb from Calvary Chapel Tegus' website here).

7. We’ve got a handful of unfinished construction projects. Pray for the finances to arrive and the man power (missions teams) to come and finish them. The multipurpose building where we do all of our activities needs gable ends, windows, finish electricity and a stage. Our personal home is one third complete. The little house for staff is three fourths complete.

Guitar Class photos

8. Our application for a one-year extension is still under review. Pray for favor with the Honduran government and that they would say, “Yes!” While under review, we are required to renew all four of our tourist visas for about $80.

9. Please continue to pray for the importation of the bus, our Honduran contact is still working on the details.

We've been adopted!
Our neighbor's pups have made
the Ranch their home.

10. It seems like our internet installation is one step closer. I was told that because we are one of only two customers in the Ojojona area, the company doesn’t want to come out for just us. However, the company is sending representatives to canvas the Ojojona area this weekend and hopefully produce more sales. As a friend recently told me, life in Honduras is on Latin Standard Time. (We signed the contract over two months ago).

11. Mare and I recently were introduced to the other midwife highly recommended by many friends and mothers in Ojojona. Doña Tilde lives in Guazucaran about an hour from us (when the road is good). She came to our door while riding via bus from Guazucaran to Ojojona. The bus got stuck in the mud and she had a half-hour to kill! Praise God. When I mentioned how highly she was recommended she gave all credit to the Lord! That was pretty encouraging!
Mare is good, but sore. Pregnant with two little ones is a tough job. Pray for her bod to have the strength to make it until December and the wisdom to know when and how to rest between now and then!

Independence Day photos

12. Continue to pray for Brooke as she works on RO4Y administrative details State side. She filled out a few applications for mission team support/help and is currently working on getting the Ranch non-profit status in the States. This is about a $1,300 process.

13. Our new worker Oscar has been a huge blessing. He comes ready to work every day with praises on his lips. His two month old daughter has been struggling with a skin rash. Marilyn, his wife, brought Genesis, their daughter, to my Marillyn and she gave her a natural remedy of oatmeal bath with lavender and chamomile, as well as coconut oil. He said that the baby had its first good night’s sleep in over a week! Praise God!!! Pray for Mare that she would have more opportunities to help locals with simple health issues like this!!!

14. Looks like Honduras is going to get hit by another hurricane this weekend. Ojojona won't be directly hit, but we'll probably get a lot of rain. Keep us in prayer!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Rancho Oasis Update

Prayer Requests:

1. We celebrated the girl’s birthdays this week. Naomi completed four years on the fourth of September and Tabi two years of life on the first. Feliz cumpleaños!

2. September 11-14, two Christian brothers (a pastor and pharmacist) from West Virginia will be arriving at the Ranch to do a reconnaissance mission. They are considering helping with some of the projects and doing a potential medical clinic at the Ranch. Pray for safe travel and wisdom as we seek God’s direction.

3. First week in October, the Ranch will be hosting a group of 8 to 10 adults from engineering Ministries international. They will be helping us know how to best use the land, as well as constructing buildings on the property. The cost of hosting these 8-10 people includes room and board and one of their plane tickets. Their services come at no charge! Estimating a value of $1,200. Would you prayerfully consider supporting the eMi team and their stay at the Ranch?

4. September is the rainiest season of the year and the water is doing a lot of damage to our gravel road from Ojojona to the property (roughly 3 miles). I’ve had to cancel classes several times because of the weather and not being confident I can get through some muddy sections of the road. Please pray for a reprieve from the rain, wisdom on how to repair sections and safety as I drive the bus and members of the body involved with RO4Y activities.

5. This Sunday begins the transition from having help from the believers in Tegus to being on our own. The adult Bible study is going to be combined with the teens and taught by Jon. Their lesson will be taught the following week to the two younger children’s classes, by volunteers from the adults and teens. This way the church will all being studying the same theme, the life of Jesus, and the adults and teens teaching the younger classes will have been prepped the week before in their own study. Pray for me as I prepare the lessons, pray also for the new teachers and for the right attitude among the people involved with RO4Y. The community in Ojojona has been receiving help from Tegucigalpa for over three years and I know that change will be challenging, but equally exciting! UPDATE: The adults and teens took to the study well! Now pray for this weekend as the adults and teens will help the two younger classes.

6. Two-thirds done on the remodel of the little house on the property. Continue to pray for wisdom for Wayne as he directs the project and for the staff to come and live in it!

7. Continue to pray for our one year visa extension. The application is being reviewed by the immigration department and could take up to 6 months before it is accepted or denied. Prayerfully it will be accepted. Once the baby is born in December, we are planning to then apply for permanent residency.

8. The process of importing the bus is still… in process. However, I did meet with the president’s assistant in the Casa Presidencial, the hacienda style office complex of the executive branch. The meeting was short and sweet, but Cecilia thanked me for our desire to serve her people and assured me that she would do what she could to help. Isn’t that cool!

9. Pray for the installation of the internet service we signed up for two months ago. UPDATE: They tried last week, but turned around saying the roads were too bad.

10. Continue to pray for strength for Marillyn during her pregnancy. With Brooke gone, life is even more demanding for her and she doesn’t get a lot of time to rest. Thankfully, with my parents here for the next few weeks, she gets some relief from the girls.

11. Jon’s parents arrived safely August 30th. They will be at Ranch Oasis through September 16. Pray for their health and safety and that they would catch the vision for the ministry (actually being here in Honduras is so different then hearing our stories and seeing pictures). Both Dave and Marsha are currently involved with different aspects of the ministry State-side.

12. Brooke is doing well in the States. She is working on many different things for the Ranch. Like contacting missions organizations that invest in ministries with finances and short term mission teams as well as apply for RO4Y non-profit status. Pray for wisdom for her as she works on Rancho stuff and strength as she is away from her family.

13. Literacy class has been terminated for the time being. Lack of interest and lack of direction from the classes instructor, a youth attending Rancho’s services. We’d like to start it up again, but pray for God’s direction and timing.

14. We’ve got some interest from some short term missions team groups to come help finish various projects at the Ranch, like the multi-purpose building and our home. Pray that God would orchestrate the teams and finances.

15. Continue to pray for our worker Jose Luciano. It appears that God is opening the door for another Christian to take his place, Oscar the man helping with the little house project. Pray for a smooth transition and wisdom to know how to minister to both of these men. UPDATE: I let Jose go last week and hired on Oscar. It has been a huge blessing to have a very excited, vocal, Honduran Christian to work with. Praise God! Pray for Jose, he didn’t take the news very well.